BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: In cities with a hot and harsh climate, defining space and territory in a sustainable and environmentally manner in urban management and human capital is critical. Cultural values and climatic adaptation played a prominent role in the neighborhood's basic elements. The main objective of the research is to identify and clarify the semantic foundations of neighborhood design in desert cities of Iran, which will be used in future improvement and rehabilitation plans.
METHODS: Naeen City, which has a particularly integrated neighborhood design structure, was chosen as the case study to support this concept. The grounded theory has been used to conduct this qualitative research and neighborhood design as a text has been considered in five physical, social, environmental, functional and aesthetic categories and identified in detail 73 themes as first level open coding. These themes were interpreted under each of the three classes of social, scientific, and aesthetic. Then as the second level open coding, 29 topics are identified in 5 categories. Finally, 10 core themes have been recognized as the Sustainable Semantic foundations of the traditional neighborhoods in the desert cities of Iran after integrating and reflecting on the collected themes.
FINDINGS: The results showed that in the category of physical structure, a focal point and hierarchy in neighborhoods; in the category of social structure, social capital and human and religious values; in the category of functional structure, functional stability and climate adaption; in the category of aesthetic structure, physical and visual identity are the most important factors in the neighborhood design in desert cities of Iran.
CONCLUSION: The findings revealed that the neighborhood in traditional Iranian cities was formed by the connectivity of physical and social elements and components, and it was the community of these neighborhoods that gave meaning to the Iranian city. Cities and neighborhoods are defined in perfect agreement with their surroundings. Neighborhoods, unlike residential units, do not require physical boundaries, and the services that people require are supplied with an emphasis on ease of access. Both as a municipal center and as an informal arena for public gatherings, the neighborhood center has been highlighted and exploited. The concentration is on common public areas that have given neighborhoods a sense of life.
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